Monday, October 08, 2007

Shayne Mallard calls upon Council to fund late night Police for Oxford Street


Liberal City of Sydney Councillor Shayne Mallard has called upon Lord Mayor and member for Sydney, Clover Moore and her ruling group on the City Council to fund a late night shop front police station and staff for Oxford Street as an immediate action to address growing anti social and homophobic behaviour on the famous entertainment strip.

"The community is tired of all the hand-wringing and finger pointing by politicians and is now demanding action," he said.

Councillor Mallard's proposal is for Council to lease a vacant shop on the south side of Oxford Street and fund the overtime for up to six police officers to be based at the station from Thursday to Sunday nights. The station would close at dawn and officers would be required to undertake regular foot patrols through venues and nearby side streets.

Council could also relocate some of their rangers to the station and offer other community services during the day. Council's Oxford street CCTV could be patched through to the office and monitored for any trouble during peak hours.

"Clearly the proposal will need to be guided by Police and community consultation,"

"Council should not have to get into the business of opening police stations, but in the absence of action by successive Labor governments we are left with little alternative."

"This is a wealthy Council that raises more than $20 million from parking meters and is currently spending $60 million renovating the Town Hall."

"I am asking for some of this wealth to be diverted into community safety and protecting a vulnerable and targeted group in our city,"

Shayne said that the proposed Oxford Street police station would be on a one year trial basis.

" After one year we will be able to measure the effectiveness of this plan and hopefully be reporting a drop in attacks on gay and lesbian members of the community. This would be an effective argument for the State government to continue the funding of this initiative.

Shayne Mallard congratulated the Lord Mayor on her recent street walk with drag show celebrity Maxi Shield and the NSW Police Minister.

"I witnessed the Lord Mayor and her media entourage checking out venues last Friday night,"

"Raising the profile of this serious issue is important but it's now time for meaningful action instead of more words," he concluded.


8 October 2007